Tomatoes are kind of a big deal. They have a short season and are only really, really good for that period. This is why they are coveted and celebrated when they are in their prime. Recently there have been tomato festivals and events at most farmers’ markets. The best advice I’ve gotten about using these heirloom varieties, which I will expand a little as it was told to me much more succinctly and in a less appropriate for public way, is this: these tomatoes are naturally very delicious on their own so don’t do anything to take away from that. So with that in mind, and hopefully staying true to it, I made this corn and tomato salad. I used the bright yellow/orange “Goldie” variety because I was taken by the color and I wanted something a little sweeter, but any of the varieties would work great and look beautiful.
I have a new (used) grill and an unstoppable desire to cook on it every night. I love being able to cook outside when my kitchen becomes too hot to bear, not to mention taking advantage of the long daylight hours before fall returns. These pizzas make an incredibly soft dough that has a wonderful crispy texture in just 5 minutes of cooking on the grill. Using summer squash was a no brainer because I have gotten several pounds of squash every week and was looking for something fun to do with it – the colorful squash mixed with the tomato sauce and fresh cheve makes this pizza beautiful and super tasty.
There have been a lot of beautiful cucumbers in my share lately so I have been trying them out in dishes as the featured ingredient, which can be a lot of pressure for the mild cucumber. This pretty salad is a little bit sweet and spicy and a lot colorful. I served it as a side to spicy carnitas tacos (recipe coming soon!) and they went together very well – the sweetness of the mangos really complimented the pork, but I think it would be a good side for a grilled meat or fish dish as well.
Basil is one of those smells that always makes me think Summer. It is so bright and aromatic, once it starts to grow you better start using it- otherwise the basil will flower and the plant will start to taste bitter. Basil is a classic accompaniment to tomatoes, something about that combination makes both ingredients stand out and taste so fresh, this simple spaghetti recipe is just that: fresh pasta, fresh pesto, and fresh cherry tomatoes.